Strange habits of company

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Dolly, Dec 13, 2003.

  1. Dolly

    Dolly Well-Known Member

    Dec 13, 2003
    I have noticed that when company comes to my home, they tend to do a few things that are rather odd. First, they park anywhere in my front yard. My driveway is more than adequate, yet they feel the urge to park on my lawn, just any old spot will do, apparently. Then, they leave my door hanging open after coming inside. Once, I actually waited to see how long it would take for one of them to snap that the back door was wide open, heat going right out, cold air replacing it. No one noticed and I had to close it myself. Afterward there inevitably follows a rude and, in my opinion, rather vulgar game of "Why is This Like This" and "Why is That Like That?" (I live in an old fixer-upper that is still in the process of fixing up and sometimes things are in various stages of completion or there will be something out of place, etc). I love having company, but honestly, after a few hours of this, I'm ready for them to go.

    I would never dream of going to the home of a friend or family member and exhibiting such behavior. Normally, they are not the type of people who misbehave, so it's difficult for me to understand why, when they come here, they act like they have landed on some other planet. I mean, the place isn't that weird. Just venting, thanks for reading.
  2. s.wilkes

    s.wilkes Active Member

    Dec 12, 2003
    I'm thinking these people were never taught manners and politeness. If someone left the door opened at Mama's, house she'd ask them if they were raised in a barn. If someone walked across her floor, company or not, was asked if they had wiped their feet? or to please pull their shoes off. Eventually, everyone knew what to expect and excepted quite well. Even bad manners were politely corrected in her house, adults or children, didn't matter to her. Folks were susposed to behave politely and respectfully, and if they didn't then they needed to be reminded to. Never did she ever get rude with anyone, but when folks came to our house very often, and were rude, they were corrected.

    If your company comes often, I don't think it would be hateful for you to ask them to please park in the driveway, or to tell them to please close the door. If they're bothering you with questions perhaps you could nicely let them know it bothers you. Letting people know how you feel is alot better than dreading to see them coming. If they are thick headed you may have to get stearn, the worst thing that could happen would be they stop coming.


  3. townmouse

    townmouse Well-Known Member

    Oct 14, 2003

    I know exactly what you mean. We are in a lower tax bracket than anyone we associate with, (this has always been true, our church tends to be upper middle class. We have doctrine in common but that's it).

    People come over and tend to exclaim, "How quaint!" or "That's so funny!" or make hillbilly jokes, when they see the way we make-do. Or else its fairly stupid Susie Homemaker comments, or, "aren't you Little House on the Prairie." The words themselves aren't so offensive, its the sneer that goes with it. Or they refused to eat our humble food and mentioned that they'd have to stop at McDonalds on the way home. (I'm talking about meals that cleaned out my mother hubbard cupboards and had me cooking all day, my kids think its a feast).

    For a few years my feelings were hurt. They were mocking things that we were very proud of. They were mocking our ideals and priorities.

    I had to decide if I was going to have pride or friends. I'm still struggling with this but I decided I needed a different approach to visitors.

    Now I beat them to the punch. When I invite them, I paste a big dumb grin on my face and say something like, "Our world's pretty different from yours. Just imagine you're entering a new culture and mind your manners. Oh, yeah, and don't make fun of the clothesline, the spinning wheel, or the apples that are drying in front of the fire, or you'll be made to bring in the firewood and slop the hog."

    This only works if you are very funny and friendly when you say it.

    My only problem is my judgmental thoughts when I enter "their" homes! Can't stand the extravagance. I feel like making fun of it, but somehow I restrain myself.

    Whatever happened to live and let live, or different strokes for different folks, or do unto others....

  4. RAC

    RAC Guest

    Why invite people over at all if it isn't fun for you? Offer to meet them somewhere like an inexpensive restaurant or the park (although in many places now even that costs money), or at the mall for window shopping or a museum. Or go over to their place and let them have all the fun of cleaning up after....:)

    If someone behaved that rudely at my house, they'd never be invited again. If they're a spouse's relatives, tell your spouse flat out that they are his/her problem, so sorry, you have fill-in-the-blank to do and won't be around.

    As far as shoes on or off, if they're regular visitors and you like them, let them bring a good substantial pair of slippers to leave in your shoe basket. Some people don't like taking their shoes off for safety reasons (don't want something hot or heavy dropping on their feet, don't want to step on lego blocks, or don't want to slip). I've been to real estate open houses where they have the booties like shower caps that slip over shoes which might be a nice compromise).

    You would be surprised at how many people would rather not either entertain at home or go over to someone's house if given the option to meet somewhere else. Wouldn't hurt to ask.
  5. Sorry, but I would never take my shoes off to go into any home. Seriously, what is the carpet, tile or the wood for? I think it is usually put down to protect the floor! Pull my shoes off and put on slippers? Come on! Manners aside, if you asked me to take off my shoes, I would never be back. Whats next? Plastic coated furniture you cant sit on because its for the guests? Too funny!
  6. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

    May 22, 2003
    Zone 7
    I would never consider going into someones private home with my street shoes on unless they wear their shoes inside. It is only decent manners to show respect regardless of the economic situation of the owners. Do as they do or stay out! I doubt if I will have you visiting my home "unregistered"
  7. RAC

    RAC Guest

    In some cultures it is common to remove shoes upon entering someone's house, however, that is presupposing that the house is clean or at least free of stuff to step on. Someone who has white carpet is just not thinking, imho.

    I don't mind taking off the shoes if I'm not, say, in a kitchen cooking, but would still prefer slippers with soles. Socks only are slippery on floors, and if you step in a spill, yuck!

    It also depends a lot on where you live--I think all houses should have mudrooms if they're located in areas where there is a lot of rain or snow. Sadly, many don't.

    I like Don Aslett's approach. He says to have carpet the same color as the mud at your house.
  8. Agmantoo,

    You need not worry. As I pointed out in my previous post, if you asked me to take off my shoes it would be the last thing you would ever ask me to do. Guess you and your lifestyle are just too good for me.
  9. Ana Bluebird

    Ana Bluebird Well-Known Member Supporter

    Dec 8, 2002
    I like S.wilkes approach---if you can graciously tell them what you expect, or the humor way of saying it, if you can pull it off. For myself, I have very cold feet so removing my shoes in a house is very uncomfortable for me. I will do it if my shoes are dirty from mud or snow or such and I will be making a mess, but I will not be comfortable. If I know I'll be shoeless in someone's house, I take a pair of slippers with me. People do often remove their shoes at my door because of dirt and snow, but I'd Never ever ask them to do so. I think it's extremely disrespectful of guests, but that was just the way I was raised. You just clean up after they are gone. Their comfort as my guest and friend is more important than my rug. But that's just me.
  10. lacyj

    lacyj Well-Known Member

    May 14, 2002
    Calif, The Mother Lode
    When we lived IN TOWN, we used to have a lot of BBQ's, live music etc. It was open house and lots of people showed up, who I had never met. I went into my bedroom and found three college aged girls sitting on MY bed. I just hung out and casually joined the conversation. Asked them how they happened to be there etc. Asked them, if they knew who lived here etc. None of them knew, DH or me obviously...So, I introduced myself, and got appologies, all their comments were basicly: I would NEVER, EVER think of sittin' in a stranger's bed room, BUT it was such a comfortable home, they liked the good feelings...
    It was such a complement, I couldn't get mad....
  11. Ann-NWIowa

    Ann-NWIowa Well-Known Member Supporter

    Sep 28, 2002
    My grandmother used to say "With friends like that who need enemies!" I wouldn't put up with anyone saying such things about my home. Recently we visited my nephew's home and his wife was apologizing for it not being nice. I told her it was nice. Compared to his two brother's new fancy homes its small, old and in a poor neighborhood, but they've made it warm and welcoming so its NICE. Later my nephew mentioned he's being laid off after Christmas. I asked his wife if they'd had a chance to review their budget to see if they can manage on her wages and his unemployment. Her answer was no problem. I then told her that not many young couples with three kids could say that and one of the reasons they could is they bought a home they could afford. Both of these young people were the scape goats in their families growing up and my husband and myself and my parents have worked very hard to encourage them. No one should put down anyone else's home!! As to removing shoes. My husband is handicapped and I would have to remove and replace his shoes and he would be terribly embarassed. I have foot problems and cannot walk without pain without the support of my shoes. Unless it was someone I knew very well I would not risk embarassing them by asking them to remove their shoes. Of course, I chose my floor coverings to not show dirt so as not to have to worry about such things.
  12. okgoatgal2

    okgoatgal2 Well-Known Member

    May 28, 2002
    hmmm, well, if an adult left my house door open, i'd calmly say something like "um, wanna go shut the door, or are you gonna pay to heat the great outdoors?" if a kid did it....i'd flat tell em to go shut the door or stay outside until they could learn how.

    sorry, i'm paying the bill, they'll sure shut that door. as to the rude comments, next time, i'd let em know it is are working on making your house your dream, and if they don't have something positive to say, please don't say it at all.
  13. kidsnchix

    kidsnchix Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2003
    the Natural State
    Whenever someone would leave a door open at my house I'd tell them that I can't afford to heat Scott County. And one time my sister got jealous because my mom asked me if I had any more of those good tomatoes out of my garden and after that sis would ask me , how was my "victory garden".

  14. Bladesmith

    Bladesmith Well-Known Member

    Sep 20, 2003
    Sorry, but anyone that makes comments that rude about my home is never going to be allowed back again, period. And depending on my mood or the moment might find themselves rather forcefully ejected. As for your more well to do "friends" Wander over to their place sometime and make comments about their obviously ostentatious displays of wealth, how far in debt they must be, and what a huge waste of land, opportunity, resources etc. they are. Turnabout is fair play and all.
  15. Nette

    Nette Well-Known Member Supporter

    Aug 17, 2003
    I'm glad someone brought up the matter of guests not closing the door. Will someone please explain that to me? Seriously, why do people do that? My husband and I have pondered that many times. Are they afraid they'll encounter something scarey in my home and will need to escape quickly? I really would like to know why...
  16. mamahen

    mamahen Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 11, 2002
    US of A
    Every time someone visits us, whether friend or family, they leave at least one door open!! Doesn't matter if it's the screen door, or outside door. You can hear the screen door smacking off of the wall!! :no:

    I ALWAYS close a door if I'm visiting someone.

    I always tell my guests to leave their shoes on. We have a coal furnace & there tends to be lots of dust. I don't want anyone to get dirty socks!! ;) When I visit someone, I usually ask if they want my shoes off or on.

    Our house is tiny so it usually looks jumbled, and someone always has to comment about it. Yeah, I'm a saver, but unless you want to figure out a place to put it, just ignore it!! :D
  17. I'm another one who takes off his shoes in my house and others as well. I've had folks tell me I don't have to do that. But they're not wearing shoes either. I don't know what's on the bottom of my shoes. Most times I'm wearing work boots that I've also worn around the animals and in mud. I'm not tracking stuff into someone elses home.

    I wouldn't want them doing it in my home even if there isn't any carpet.
  18. renee o'neill

    renee o'neill Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2002
    Our " friends" dont come anymore,but our friends do.Most family has not been invited back in the last 7 yrs,I think they got the point.I dont walk into someones home and make rude comments so I dont allow it here.A family member has been here 2xs in 8 yrs she lives 5 min. away but after visit #2 when she made the comment that I was lowering her standing in the town and she called people like us white trash she has never been back.I simple told her that we were not after the mighty dollar and we live the way we do because we like itand I can sleep at night knowing very well I have not lowered my morals durning the day that she could leave from the door she just walked in.I refuse to allow her back.
    The shoe thing,well if its really muddy out I take mine off and if my guest does the same its great,if not oh well.
  19. Ardie/WI

    Ardie/WI Well-Known Member Supporter

    May 10, 2002
    While it is quite common for people to park on lawns out here, I can't imagine having company that would do it unless the driveway is full! The would get asked if they park their vehicles on their lawns at home. if not, they'd then get told to move their vehicles off my lawn.
    As for the rude comments, they'd get told to leave and not let the door hit them you-know where!
    The same goes for leaving doors open. Ask them if they do that at home and if not, why are they doing it at your house.

    By the way, do you consider these people friends? They aren't! :no:
  20. Nature Girl

    Nature Girl Active Member

    Nov 12, 2003
    Oh grrr, If those were my friends, I would defenitly have a sh*tfit!! Although it would be more of a rant about their behavior after they left, as I am horrible with confronting people,I'm very passive agressive. But then again I tend to take things to heart a little too much. To me it show's lack of respect for me and my property.

    I'd probably ask them innocently "how come you parked on the lawn?"then ask them politely to park in the driveway.

    For the door being left open, I'd just tell the person who left it open to shut the door, even if i was standing right beside it.

    As for shoes, that is really one of my pet peeves. I always take off my shoes in other people's houses and I expect the same. Then again, if they were disabled or ederly and were'nt able to take off their shoes with ease I would let it go, or tell them to keep them on if they made a move to remove them.

    If someone was being rude about the way we lived, I'd either defend it, or say something about how they must have alot of bills to go along with that fancy stuff, it would depend on my mood at the time.

    One thing is for sure though, If people like that came to my house, that would be the last time they came over.